Over the past year or so, I’ve really started to think about what it means to live a life that is fulfilled, honest, reflective and in pursuit of our ultimate goals. It seems that life presents us so many opportunities to send us off track in pursuit of these. We are too often negatively impacted by society’s ideas and standards for what it is that a predetermined ‘happy and responsible life’ should look like. But why is it that we so easily give up on our ideals and our own standards in order to conform to what more likely, is set to be the mundane?
Recently, I’ve watched helplessly as the most unique, different and distinctive people have given into the conformity that exists around them and allowed this monotony to diminish their spark. They’ve given into the nagging societal voice at the back of their minds which tells them that life will be that much easier if they just conform. I’ve also witnessed people of this same group allow society to tell them that their quirks are character flaws, and the worst part of all of this is, that they have believed them and moulded into the nothingness void of what is considered to be the socially acceptable human being.
Our generation, like others which have preceded us, have seemingly rewritten the rules on how to live a ‘meaningful’ life. Unlike the generations before us though, Gen Y has placed emphasis on investing in moments, in memories like travelling the world and living abroad in the pursuit of adventure. And yet, we are still guilted into perceiving this is a nonsensical temporary skip away from reality. What of those of us that haven’t given in to the ‘inevitable’ grounding of our realities? Those of us who haven’t done the ‘sensible’ thing? Chosen the dependable vocation? The most poignant question to pose here is, isn’t life about risk taking in the first place?!
The truth is, we live in a society to which the consistent messaging of ‘the right type’ of behaviour, of life, of existence has almost become subliminal in nature. The everyday toting of such an ideal has become the hypocritical catch cry of our universal existence. Since when did difference and individuality become such a stain on humanity?
The day I take my last breath, I want to be able to look back at life and say that I lived it the way that I wanted to, the way that made me happy. I want to be able to affirm that I followed my own unique path, and whilst it may not have always been easy or the ‘right’ way, it served me the purpose of a lifetime of memories that were ultimately worth living for.